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Raising a Secure Child: How Circle of Security Parenting Can Help You Nurture Your Child’s Attachment

Raising a Secure Child: How Circle of Security Parenting Can Help You Nurture Your Child’s Attachment PDF

Author: Kent Hoffman , Glen Cooper

Publisher: The Guilford Press


Publish Date: February 6, 2017

ISBN-10: 1462527639

Pages: 280

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

If you are looking for a practical, wise, science-based, and accessible  guide to creating the kind of attachment your child needs to optimize  development, you’ve come to the right place! Kent Hoffman, Glen Cooper, and Bert Powell are highly gifted and experienced clinicians whose  Circle of Security approach has been proven in research to be a practical and effective way to help parents nurture their children well. I first met these three masters of human relationships years ago  and was immediately impressed with their sensitivity, kindness, and  humanity. As they worked to develop their Circle of Security approach,  they continually based their creative endeavors on the scientific studies  of attachment—how children connect with their caregivers—to be sure  their foundations were solidly established. Then they went further and  tested their model to see if it worked, not only for their own programs  but also for those who had learned to use it around the world. Building  on the newest findings of neuroscience, this approach can offer you the  latest and best on how to raise your children.

Attachment refers to how we as mammals rely on our caregivers  for nurturance as we grow toward maturity. A selective few attachment figures will naturally shape our growth by the ways in which they  communicate with us from our earliest days. Attachment research has  shown that those children who are fortunate to develop what is called  “secure” attachment are most likely to grow into caring, thoughtful, reflective, emotionally and socially intelligent, resilient individuals  who thrive

If this is what you are looking for in your child’s future, the Circle of Security approach to parenting will show you how to optimize  growth toward these life-affirming traits. You may be wondering, however, why anyone would need to read a book about something that is so  natural. Why doesn’t everyone just have secure attachments? Research has shown that many factors influence how we parent  our children and that offering ways for children to be seen, soothed,  safe, and secure provides a gateway to their well-being. But many things  can get in the way. One of those factors is our own childhood experiences. Yet the research is robust and clear: It isn’t what happened to us  in our childhood by itself that is the crucial factor in predicting how  our children will become attached to us, but rather the way we’ve made  sense of how our childhood experiences have influenced us. Careful  studies on over 10,000 individuals have shown that how we’ve been  able to reflect on those things that were not so good and make sense  of how they impacted our development and affect our current parenting is what matters most (see my book The Developing Mind [2012] for  a summary of these findings). And even if our attachments to our own  parents and other caregivers were secure, any of us can benefit from  deepening our awareness of how we provide nurturance for our children. There is always room for learning and growth! The great news is  that it is never too late to make sense of your life and learn to enhance  your connections with those you love.

As you learn about how to reflect on your relationship with your  child now, you’ll see more clearly that how you communicate with your  child can create, as our wonderful authors suggest, a way to “Be-With”  your child in deeply rewarding ways. You’ll be given the opportunity  in the course of these magnificent pages to make sense, for example,  of how “shark music” (a brilliantly evocative name these authors have  given to the echoes of our own childhood attachments) can arise  from implicit forms of memory. We all have a storehouse of emotions,  images, bodily sensations, and beliefs we may not even feel are coming  from the past that may be directly limiting our ability to connect with  our child in these important and learnable ways that support the cultivation of secure attachment. We usually don’t even know that shark  music is interfering with how we connect with our children. This book  will show you how to approach such experiences and free yourself from how they may be hindering your parenting.

Relationships are never perfect. If you have perfectionism in your  strategy, you can actually start creating tension in your parenting by being too hard on yourself. This is a book filled with practical suggestions for how to be kinder with yourself and in turn model a receptive  approach for your child. The great news from attachment research is  that we can set a certain intention and make healing repairs when we  experience the inevitable ruptures in those attuned, contingent connections. This book will show you how to identify and heal such ruptures through the powerful examples and clear descriptions of this  important process of repair.

As I was reading these words of wisdom, I was impressed again  and again with the exquisite sensitivity, clarity, and outright brilliance  of these humble and dedicated guides. What a gift Raising a Secure Child is for us, for our children, and for the world. Thank you, Kent, Glen,  Bert, and your associate, Christine Benton, for composing such a masterpiece. And thank you for having the insight, courage, and love to  take in these pages and bring security into your child’s life. Enjoy the  journey ahead!

Daniel J. Siegel, MD
author of The Developing Mind, Brainstorm, Mindsight,
and Mind; coauthor of Parenting from the Inside Out,
The Whole-Brain Child, and No-Drama Discipline

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